“You know the next commandment pretty well, too: ‘Don’t go to bed with another’s spouse.’ But don’t think you’ve preserved your virtue simply by staying out of bed. Your heart can be corrupted by lust even quicker than your body. Those leering looks you think nobody notices—they also corrupt. “Let’s not pretend this is easier than it really is. If you want to live a morally pure life, here’s what you have to do: You have to blind your right eye the moment you catch it in a lustful leer. You have to choose to live one-eyed or else be dumped on a moral trash pile. Matthew 5:27 - 29 (TMSG)
A week ago we went to my grandson Christopher’s concert in Winston Salem. He plays the French horn, and he’s much better at it than your grandson! (There…grandpa pride showing again).
On the way home we toured Winston because I made a wrong turn. Boy, what an understatement! As we wound our way along Peter’s Creek Parkway towards I-40, there it was – the sign had just one word….LUST !
It is not a small sign.
Neither is it a small sin.
Jesus told us what to do with eyes that won’t behave….pluck ‘em out! Now you know he was using hyperbole…exaggerating way beyond reality to make the point? I mean, how would that work out…Christian drivers plucking-out eyes on Peter’s Creek Parkway? Think of the accidents all those blinded drivers would cause.
So…What DOES it mean to pluck out an offending eye?
It means something harder than plucking-out physical eyes. This has to do with working on the internal organ – the heart.
It takes courage to face what’s wrong with you and do something about it. Jesus was messing with most men’s wheelhouse here. Men’s eyes are the target in this culture for that which creates lust in the heart. In a society already obsessed with sex, women who dress provocatively do little to help the problem. And Christian women who dress that way are as foolish and guilty of sin as the men who gape at them.
Sin arrives with the second look
A middle-aged man and his wife were walking down the street when a beautiful young thing passed them; she had long, flowing, silky red hair and was almost fully-dressed. The husband couldn’t help himself, sneaking a second peek after she’d passed by. The wife, without looking at her man, simply asked, I wonder if she was worth the trouble you’re in?
The Apostle Paul gave us a great commentary on Jesus’ eye-plucking; he gave us starting points for moral purity in our lives:
And that means killing off everything connected with that way of death: sexual promiscuity, impurity, lust, doing whatever you feel like whenever you feel like it, and grabbing whatever attracts your fancy. That’s a life shaped by things and feelings instead of by God. Colossians 3:5 (TMSG)
You cannot help what our culture serves up, but you don’t have to linger over the menu.
Gentlemen…be that. Ladies….be that.
Let God shape your lives, not lust.